University Response to Campus Incident

ASC President Joey Bianco’s address in chapel

Good morning.

Now that we are all aware of the incident last week and have felt its affects, I want to address you as your student body president.

The incident was wrong, offensive and completely inappropriate. It does not reflect the George Fox students whom I serve. We are a campus that reflects the love of Christ. We are students who care for and support one another. We do not take this as a joke; we do not find it funny. This is why this incident is a big deal: Because we serve Christ – the King of all kings, the Hope of Glory, the Judge of the living and the dead, the Blessed and only Ruler, the Great High Priest, the Author of Salvation, the Son of the Most High God – and an incident like this tarnishes the name of Jesus. So once again I say to you: This is a big deal.

I am going to read from Colossians 3:9-15:

“Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices, and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him – a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, but Christ is all and in all. So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; bearing with one another, and forgiving each other (that includes whoever is responsible for this incident), whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you. Beyond all these things put on love, which is in the perfect bond of unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body.”

So in this time, I ask that you join me in reaching out to those who are hurting, who feel threatened or excluded. That we would put on love and be there for one another, support and encourage and lift each other up in this community. We are called to one body, the body of Christ, so I ask you to walk your talk, that you would show me your faith by your works. I pray we would live out the call of Christ and love one another with the greatest love – the love that would lay down its life for another. We are a community, we are fellow students, we are brothers and sisters in Christ, we are the body of Christ.

Now let us act. Join me today and tomorrow in Bauman Auditorium, in the Bruin Den, and in the prayer chapel where we are providing paper and asking you to, in writing, define yourself in any way you choose. For example, it could be “I am Hispanic, I am an athlete, or I am a single mother.” Whatever it is, it should define you and who God made you to be. Then, on Wednesday, we will put all the papers you wrote on the windows of the Student Union Building to show that, though we are all uniquely made and fashioned by God and have our own identity, we are together the body of Christ. We are in this together. To continue this message I ask that on Wednesday you wear a navy blue shirt all day to show your support for each other in this community. And on Wednesday, after chapel, we will gather around the clock tower for a moment to lift up our community in prayer.

I love you guys and am proud to serve you. This place is truly amazing and full of incredible people.

Blessings over you all.

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